Crouched Burial An awardwinning poem before bedtime

first_img Una Mannion, winner of the Emerging Poetry award at the Hennessy Literary Awards.FOR DECADES, THE Hennessy Literary Awards have been alerting us to some of the best new Irish writers around.Last night saw three new writers being awarded prizes for their work, at an event in the Baroque Chapel in IMMA. At the 46th Hennessy Literary Awards, Sean Tanner was named the winner of the First Fiction category, Rachel Donohue won for Emerging Fiction, and Una Mannion for Emerging Poetry.Rachel Donohue was then named the overall Hennessy New Irish Writer of the Year. The winners were chosen by authors Elizabeth Day, Mike McCormack and The Irish Times New Irish Writing page editor, Ciaran Carty. Pictured at the Hennessy Literary Awards at IMMA Kilmainham were Vona Groarke, Hall of Fame Inductee; Una Mannion, Emerging Poetry Winner, Rachel Donohue, Emerging Fiction Winner and Hennessy New Irish Writer of the Year; Sean Tanner, First FictionUna Mannion said her poem Crouched Burial was inspired by an incident that occurred when she was a teenager.“The summer I was 15, a child’s body was found in our field in Culleenamore, County Sligo,” she explained.  ”The child, 2000 years old, was lying in a crouched position, on her side, fetal, arms holding herself. The imprint of her small frame in the earth and details of her burial shaped this poem.”Here is the winning poem:Crouched Burial, by Una MannionThey move the earth with small trowels and brushes andall week the seals sing a desolate chorus as if for you.First a small child’s foot slow sweeps of the brush across your small bones,your shape in the ditch, taking definition, a slow birthin the corner of the field by the water’s edge. Wednesday 29 Mar 2017, 7:30 PM Share35 Tweet Email3 Mar 29th 2017, 7:30 PM In the moon bayat the edge of earth where they found youthe midden’s shelves layer time, like growth rings.Now is our turn on the surface of timeyou and your buried bead, prehistory,before there were written words to remember with.A sequence of milk teeth along the bone of your jaw andthe buds to permanent ones spell your age.You are eighteen months old.Your bones in the midden are a mysteryIron Age people didn’t bury their deadbodies were left to wind, or wolves or water.But not you.Perhaps touching your cold cheek your mothercould not abandon your body to the nightand here, where the land juts out toward the sea and the tide moves,a place she might find again,she brought you.Check back on the site this weekend, when we share the two winning short stories.Read: Ireland’s favourite books for 2016 have been announced> ‘Crouched Burial’: An award-winning poem before bedtime A poem from this year’s Hennessy Awards Winner for Emerging Poetry, Una Mannion. Short URL https://jrnl.ie/3312724 center_img By Aoife Barry 10,333 Views Beside your ribcage, a single blue glass beadfor your ear a bronze ring,your grave gifts.If flowers and herbs cradled your head,they are dust now.Someone brought you hereand laid you down with careyour death a secret, your story buried. 6 Comments You are lying on your sideknees pulled into your chestthe thin bones of your armsholding yourself without your handsyour heavy head bent low toward your small body,a comma in the earth,like an ultra sound picture of the earth’s wombwhere you lay crouched for years. Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more